Sealants are a great way to protect against tooth decay and cavities on your back teeth (molars). These are the teeth that are most vulnerable to cavities and decay because they have deeper depressions and grooves that food particles and plaque build up in. They are also the most difficult to reach and clean. Sealing the grooves will help keep out the plaque, food, and acids. The first molars come in around 6-7 years of age and second molars come in between 11-13 years old. Sealants are best placed when the molars first come in to ensure they are protected early.
When we place sealants we first make sure the tooth is clean. We need the tooth to be dry, so we may place a few cotton rolls around the tooth and blow air on it. The sealant is applied as a liquid to the grooves of the tooth. Finally, a special light is used to help harden and cure the sealant. Sealants hold up well under the force of normal chewing and can last several years before a reapplication is needed.